60 seconds (in the spotlight): an interview with Kaide Gonzalez
— August 22, 2023

In May and June 2023, Kaide Gonzalez was one of the dance makers involved in a New Adventures residency at ICK Dans Amsterdam. Kaide is a Swedish/Chilean dancer specialized in House dance. He started his training at Åsa Folkhögskola in Sweden and graduated from the Academy of Theatre and Dance in Amsterdam in 2022. He frequently participates in international battles alongside to teaching and performing. Free from labels, but mindful of the House dance culture he’s part of, he is intrigued by the notion of an in-between.

During New Adventures, Kaide worked on his newest solo work 60 seconds, in which he explores the battle scene and the journey towards those 60 seconds in the spotlight during a battle. Before starting his residency, Kaide engaged in an interview with Astrid Klein Haneveld, dramaturge and artistic assistant at ICK-Artist Space. They discussed Kaides background, inspirations, goals, and challenges: all of them work as inspirations for 60 seconds.

60 seconds by Kaide Gonzalez, photo by Alwin Poiana

Who are you? 

My name is Kaide, I am born and raised in Sweden with both parents being from Chile. My background in dance is mainly in street dance, where I focus on house and hip hop. The main reason I came to Amsterdam is for my study at the Docent Dans department from the Amsterdamse Hogeschool voor de Kunsten, where I graduated in June 2022. After already teaching a lot in Sweden, I wanted to go back to studying: I got to reflect anew on how I was teaching, how I was performing, and to, for the first time, also focus on creating, to expand my skills. 

I have always had an interest in both making and performing, but I never saw myself doing it, so I never pursued it. In the education at the AHK, however, I was able to give creating more time through various creative assignments on artistic practice, and my interest in creating grew more and more. This itch of wanting to create has grown over the years, and now I felt the urgency to create a solo: the whole creative process is in myself, I am both the maker and the performer.  

What is your inspiration for 60 seconds? 

I come from a street dance background. What I mainly have focused on over the course of the past few years is my individual practice of developing skills and and putting them to the test in battles. These competitions are something that I participate in a lot. As a competitor, you only have one minute to dance, to show your skills, and to have your physical conversation with someone else. It fascinates me that I put so much effort and time in developing these skills and participating in these events where I get to dance for maximum 60 seconds at a time: what is it that motivates a person to do that and to spend all that time practicing?  

While training for battles, as you move closer to your goals, it becomes more and more clear what you still need to work on. This motivates me but it is also a constantly developing process. It is a daily practice, focusing on developing your movement skills and being in physical shape, and on certain skills that you are being tested in, such as musicality, performance, and mentality. There is so much we want to achieve, but there is only so much you can focus on at the same time.  

This solo for me is about sharing this side of street dance that people may not be familiar with. More than just seeing the product of a battle – people doing their battle rounds – I want to share the process: what process is within the product they see? In this one minute, there is a whole career, a lot of time and effort. The minutes of performance are putting to the test the years of practice that came before. This solo makes the journey visible, the behind-the-scenes, rather than what is on stage. 60 seconds dives into this theme through my personal experience with battles.  

The streetdance community in the Netherlands was very open to receive me when I arrived here. This became my second home because of this openness. These communities become part of your journey, but the journey in the end is you. At the end of the day, this solo reflects my personal experience. By sharing my voice, I hope that the audience will get a glimpse of what a person can experience within this battle scene and how the battle scene looks from an individual’s perspective.  

60 seconds by Kaide Gonzalez, photo by Alwin Poiana

What do you expect and hope for in your New Adventures residency? 

This solo challenges me to become a bit more comfortable in the theatre space. The theatre space is mostly cultivated by contemporary dance and dancers. Coming into this playfield as someone with roots in street dance, I want to learn as much as possible, by being excited to step into this solo process and into my future as a maker. 

I have never felt I am just a house dancer or just a hip hop dancer. I enjoy bringing different elements into my dance and working in between styles. What happens when we step into this space of the in-between? As a maker, I want to explore this third space: not being bound by the labels where we come from, but just having those as a starting point. We can explore dance and make dance performances while knowing what our roots are, but without being bound by a label.  

My movement practice can be defined as Leviathan Flow: finding freedom in movement by being aware of your body’s basic capabilities. With these capabilities, we can find freedom through improvisation. I am bridging between styles, but this background in freestyle and improvisation is a strong aspect that I always want to be present in my work. For me, improvisation is the best way to be authentic.  

This New Adventures residency offers me the space to explore who I am as a maker and as a performer, and to be supported and guided in this artistic process. It is a space for trying, and I want to keep trying until I trust myself to be doing

Trailer of 60 seconds by Kaide Gonzalez, video and editing by Saskia Habermann

— Article written by Astrid Klein Haneveld